This federal program lowers the monthly cost of your phone and internet.
Lifeline is helping keep low-income consumers connected by making communication services more affordable. This program provides individuals with a discount on monthly telephone service, internet service or bundled voice-broadband packages from participating wireline or wireless providers. This federal program gives a monthly discount on services of up to $9.25. This discount can only be applicable to subscribers that meet qualifying criteria. For individuals that reside on Tribal lands then the applicable discount can be up to $34.25 a month.
Do I Qualify?
There are a few factors that go into determining if an individual qualifies for lifeline.
Income – you can get lifeline if your income is less than 135% or less than the federal poverty guidelines. These guidelines are variable depending on your household size and state.
Federal Assistance Programs – if someone in the household participates in other Federal Assistance Programs this will qualify you, this includes your child or dependent. Programs such as Medicaid, SNAP, SSI, FPHA, Veteran’s Pension and Survivors Benefit, Tribal Programs and more are included. Proof that you participate in one of these programs is all that you need when you go to apply.
How Do I Enroll?
Lifeline accepts applications online through the National Verifier application system at: https://nationalverifier.servicenowservices.com/lifeline
If you state does not participate with the National Verifier then you may also mail in your application following the instructions provided here: https://www.lifelinesupport.org/how-to-get-lifeline/
Commonly Asked Questions About the Lifeline Program
The Lifeline program can feel a bit complicated. Many consumers have commonly asked questions that you may have as well!
What Should I Do If I Have a Disability and Need Help with My Lifeline Application?
You should contact the Lifeline Support Center toll-free number at 1-800-234-9473, or email LifelineSupport@usac.org. They will be able to provide assistance and information about your Lifeline benefits. The FCC also has a Disability Rights office that may be able to help. If you are interested in getting in touch you can reach the Disability Rights office by phone at 202-418-2517 for a voice phone call, at 844-432-2275 for a video phone call, or by email at DRO@fcc.gov.
What is the Definition of a “Household” in Relation to the Lifeline Program?
According to the FCC, a household” is an individual or a group of individuals that live/reside at the same address as a singular economic unit. The term “economic unit” refers to the adult contributors and sharers of income and expenses within the “household”.
Don’t worry if you live in a group housing facility, you can still qualify! You just may be required to fill out information in order to determine your “household” eligibility. Make sure to use the free eligibility confirmation tools to help you during the application process.
What If I Want More Than One Lifeline Benefit?
Unfortunately, it doesn’t matter if you want more than one Lifeline benefit. According to federal guidelines, only one Lifeline benefit is permitted per one household. Recipients of the Lifeline program can choose to have this apply to either a wireless service, a wireline service, a broadband service, or a bundled service. Individuals that do not follow the federal guidelines on one benefit per household face criminal and/or civil penalties.
While the Lifeline program may not seem like much, the savings can add up! This discount to your bills may be able to help you improve your financial situation. With the extra money you save, you can work on your debt, other bills, and more! Make sure to use the free resources available online and reach out to a professional if you need any more help.
If you have an injury or illness that prevents you from working a full-time job, you could receive up to $3,148 per month in financial assistance from the Federal Government. To see how much you could qualify to receive, please complete this short 30 second form.